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Muddy York Walking Tours

Join us in exploring the City of Toronto

History Talks

If you can’t come on a Muddy York Walking Tour, I can bring the history to you!

Going on a tour allows you to visit where history happened, but an illustrated talk can help surround you in that history. These talks are built out of an archive of thousands of historical pictures of Toronto, dating back over 150 years. Where possible, I also include historical newsreel or film footage and music to augment each presentation.

Many of these photographs and film clips are rarely seen by the public. Together, they paint a picture that make it as close as anyone can come to stepping back into the past.

I come equipped with laptop, projector and speakers for any audio-visual footage that I include in my presentations. All that’s required at each site is a nearby power outlet and a small table for my equipment. For larger rooms, an in house microphone and amplifier might be useful.

Each talk can be customized, and can last anywhere from half an hour to two hours.

Remember, if you don’t see a subjected listed, just ask, and we can make arrangements to organize something. We are always adding to the list of what’s available. Additional subjects include Toronto artists, a history of inventions made in Toronto, a look back at Toronto’s harbour front, Toronto’s changing skyline, and many others.

Click on any of the subjects listed below to bring up more information about each one, and a couple of sample slides from each talk.

THE HISTORY OF TORONTO BY DECADE

Travel back in time to visit all the most significant events and landmarks in Toronto from 1910 until 1969.

STRANGE TALES OF TORONTO WEATHER

From heat waves to snow storms, this talk revisits the highs and lows of Toronto’s weather.

CELEBRATING CANADA : TORONTO IN 1967

2017 marks the 150th anniversary of Confederation, but what was Toronto like during the 100th anniversary celebrations in 1967? With a new city hall, a new national flag, and the last time the Leafs won the Stanley Cup, it was an exciting time in Toronto!

A HISTORY OF THE UNITED EMPIRE LOYALISTS IN TORONTO

The United Empire Loyalists were American pioneers who formed the first major group of newcomers to Toronto. Hear some of the untold stories of these intrepid settlers.

EARLY TORONTO

Discover the history of the Toronto area from the 1600s through to 1834, when the Old Town of York officially became the City of Toronto.

VICTORIAN TORONTO

Have a look back at a time of great change in Toronto, as we grew from a small town into an Imperial City.

HISTORIC MOVIE THEATRES OF TORONTO

This talk illustrates the history of cinema in Toronto, and some of the old movie houses that were popular across the city.

TORONTO’S MUSIC & ENTERTAINMENT HISTORY

This is a very popular subject, and the presentations that we have on music in Toronto includes film and music clips that will have audience members tapping their feet, and maybe even singing along!

AMUSEMENT PARKS ON TORONTO’S WATERFRONT

This presentation on Toronto’s most loved lakeshore attractions is full of nostalgia.

THE BOYD GANG : TORONTO’S GENTLEMAN GANGSTER

Edwin Alonzo Boyd was a charismatic criminal who led one of the most infamous bands of crooks in Canadian history.

“TORONTO NOIR” TRUE CRIME PRESENTATION

This presentation chronicles 200 years and more of bad behaviour, murder, bootlegging, infidelity, fatal dues and riots in the street of Toronto.

A HISTORY OF POLICING, PRISONS & CAPITAL PUNISHMENT IN TORONTO Did you know that Toronto has the earliest professional police force in North America?

LOST TORONTO Those who love the history and architecture of Toronto often lament how many of our most significant buildings have been lost to time. This talk illustrates the most well known buildings in Toronto that have been lost to demolition.

TORONTO’S OLD HOMES & ESTATES Toronto has had some beautiful residential estates over the past 200 years. Some of them are lost, while others still survive. This presentation will open the doors of some of these old homes for you, so you can imagine the grandeur in which some Torontonians once lived.

HOME FRONT : TORONTO DURING THE FIRST WORLD WAR Originally prepared in 2014 for the centenary of the start of “the war to end all wars”, this presentation documents the role that Toronto played during that conflict.

REMEMBRANCE : A HISTORY OF REMEMBRANCE DAY IN TORONTO This talk illustrates how the various symbols and ceremonies that we associate with Remembrance Day came to be.

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